Fr. James' Lectionary

The Lectionary is both a reading program for completing all of Holy Scripture on a one year schedule, and a daily comment on a portion of the day's reading wedded to a poem to give an added perspective on the theme.

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Location: Amherst, Virginia, United States

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Daily Readings
Song of Solomon 8 + I Samuel 27:1-28:2 + Daniel 7 + John 5

Quote of the Day
Set me as a seal upon your heart,
as a seal upon your arm;
for love is strong as death,
passion fierce as the grave.
Its flashes are flashes of fire,
a raging flame.
Many waters cannot quench love,
neither can floods drown it.
If one offered for love
all the wealth of his house,
it would be utterly scorned.
Song of Solomon 8:6, 7

Daily Text: I Samuel 27:1, 4, 8, 10, 12, 28:1
David said in his heart, "I shall now perish one day by the hand of Saul; there is nothing better for me than to escape to the land of the Philistines; then Saul will despair of seeking me any longer within the borders of Israel, and I shall escape out of his hand." 4When Saul was told that David had fled to Gath, he no longer sought for him.
8 Now David and his men went up and made raids on the Geshurites, the Girzites, and the Amalekites; for these were the landed settlements from Telam on the way to Shur and on to the land of Egypt. 10When Achish asked, "Against whom have you made a raid today?" David would say, "Against the Negeb of Judah," or "Against the Negeb of the Jerahmeelites," or, "Against the Negeb of the Kenites." 12Achish trusted David, thinking, "He has made himself utterly abhorrent to his people Israel; therefore he shall always be my servant."
28
In those days the Philistines gathered their forces for war, to fight against Israel. Achish said to David, "You know, of course, that you and your men are to go out with me in the army."


Lectio What one word or phrase from the Daily Text leaps out at you? ‘Comment’ below.

Foreign Entanglement
It was never more true that for one benefit you must give up another than it was for David when he fled Saul to live under the beneficence and protection of King Achish of Gath. He had to make the king believe that he was hated by all Israel and Judah, while at the same time striking continuously at Israel and Judah’s enemies and competitors. It was a risky tightrope to walk and ultimately it landed him in the hot pot of being expected by the king to fight with the king against Israel.

The essence of this chapter is that David and his men always stayed true to Israel, even though they lived in enemy Philistine territory and prospered all the while. It did however entangle him in a web of lies, to say nothing of the ruthless manner in which he dealt with the people against whom his raiders descended.

Meditatio What would you add to this commentary on the Daily Text? ‘Comment’ below.

Soliloquy from “Hamlet”

William Shakespeare

To be or not to be; that is the question;
Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them. To die: to sleep:
No more; and by a sleep to say we end
The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to; ‘tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished. Tod die; to sleep;
To sleep: perchance to dream: aye, there’s the rub;
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause: there’s the respect
That makes calamity of so long life;
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
The oppressor’s wrong, the proud man’s contumely,
The pangs of despis’d love, the law’s delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of the unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin? Who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death—
The undiscover’d country from whose bourn
No traveler returns—puzzles the will
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all,
And thus the native hue of resolution
Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought,
And enterprises of great pith and moment
With this regard their currents turn awry,
And lose the name of action.
404:57

(Alternative poem? Include under ‘comment’ below.)

Oratio Conspire to respond with an act of kindness for someone you encounter today. Make it loving, low key and low risk. Hold a door, clean a car, give a flower, notice the unnoticed, make Christ’s love real. Write your experience below under ‘Comment.’

Contemplatio Enjoy what God is doing through you.

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